Solar power in Belgium

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Solar potential in Belgium

Solar power in Belgium reached an installed capacity of 4,254 MW of power generating 3,563 GWh of electricity in 2018.[1] In 2015 PV solar power accounted for around 4% of Belgium's total electricity demand, the 4th highest penetration figure in the world, although the country is some way behind the leaders Germany, Italy and Greece at between 7% and 8% of electricity demand.[2]

Installed capacity grew at an outstanding pace from 2008 until 2012, but its growth has since slowed to a steady pace. Almost all of solar power in Belgium is grid connected.[2]

Timeline[edit]

Belgium Growth of PV Capacity
in megawatts since 2005
Source: EPIA and IEA-PVPS[3][4][5]
1,000
2,000
3,000
4,000
2005
2007
2009
2011
2013
2015
2017
Year Photovoltaics[6][7][8][9][10]
MWp GWh Ref
2008 71 n.a
2009 574 488
2010 787 560
2011 2,051 1,170
2012 2,768 2,115
2013 2,983 2,352
2014 3,140 2,883 [2]
2015 3,252 3,045 [11]
2016 3,561 3,086 [12]
2017 3,846 3,149 [12]
2018 4,254 3,563 [1]
Source: Photovoltaic Barometer

2007

Installed capacity of solar power increased drastically after 2007.[13] During 2009 the amount of solar installations quadrupled from 16,000 to 65,000. Residential and small installations had a combined power of about 220 MWp.[14]

2009

In December 2009, there were 35,500 solar power installations in the Flemish region, 17,000 in Wallonia and 7,000 in the Brussels Capital Region.[15] The number of installations in the Flemish region in particular was expanding rapidly at that time due to a favourable support measure expiring at the end of the year.[16]

2011

At the end of 2011 the bulk of photovoltaic capacity was installed in the Flemish Region (88%), the remaining 12% was found mostly in Wallonia. The smaller Brussels-Capital Region had an installed capacity of 7 MWp. .[17]

2013

In 2013, Belgium's watt per capita distribution, the total installed photovoltaic capacity per inhabitant, amounted to 267 watts. This was the third highest per-capita figure in the European Union—and therefore also in the world at that time—just behind Germany (447 watts) and Italy (295 watts).[18] In terms of the overall installed capacity of 2,983 MW, Belgium ranked tenth and belonged to the Top 10 leading photovoltaic countries in the world.[19][20]

2014

In the afternoon of 20 March 2014, a new record of peak electricity generation had been achieved. According to the power supplier Eneco Energie, more than two gigawatt of electric power, corresponding to two full-sized nuclear power plants, were generated by solar PV and supplied more than 20 percent of the overall electricity consumption at the time.[21]

2015

In 2015 Solar PV per capita amounted to 287 Watts, the third highest in the world after Germany and Italy, providing around 4% of Belgium's total electricity demand.[2]

2016

Solar PV per capita grew to 302.8 Watts, remaining the third highest in the EU.[11]

Solar PV market by segment[edit]

Installed Capacity in Belgium by class size 2017[22]
<10 kW 62.89%
10-100 kW 17.71%
>250 kW 19.39%

Nearly 63% of solar power installed in Belgium in 2017 was for small systems of less than 10 kW, mostly residential rooftop Solar PV. Larger systems over 250 kW accounted for almost 20% of the total.

Residential Solar PV Capacity[edit]

According to a report on behalf of the European Commission in 2015 Belgium Flanders had an estimated 1,301 MW (666 MW) of residential solar PV capacity with 336,000 (232,000) residential solar PV prosumers in the country representing 7.1% (3.7%) of households.[23] The average size of residential solar PV systems is estimated to be 3.87 kW moving to 2030.[23] The technical potential for residential solar PV in Belgium Flanders is estimated at 7,327 MW and Belgium Wallonia at 3,753 MW .[23] The payback time for residential Solar PV in Belgium Flanders was 14.7 years whilst in Belgium Wallonia it was 6.9 years as of 2015.[23] Some of the advantages of small scale residential Solar include eliminating the need for extra land, keeping cost saving advantages in local communities and empowering households to become prosumers of renewable electricity and thus raising awareness of wasteful consumption habits and environmental issues through direct experience.

Flanders[edit]

As of July 2012 there are 42,644 photovoltaic installations in the Flemish region that receive green certificates.[24]

Installed capacity (MWp)[24]
Year Antwerp Limburg East Flanders Flemish Brabant West Flanders Total
2006 0.762 0.468 0.801 0.722 0.881 3.6
2007 3.9 4.8 4.4 3.0 5.9 22.0
2008 19.4 22.7 17.7 11.1 18.3 89.1
2009 110 88 149 65 130 542
2010 195 157 219 109 216 896
2011 386 350 362 194 379 1,672
2012 462 433 427 232 447 2,002
2013 488 453 474 248 471 2,135
2014 496 461 482 254 480 2,173
2015 506 468 486 256 488 2,204
mid 2016 507 469 488 256 485 2,204

Subsidies[edit]

Towards 2011, it became clear that Flemish subsidies for solar panels had a significant impact on the cost of electricity of households without a photovoltaic installation. An added cost of up to 148 EUR is charged annually. Flemish minister for Energy Freya van den Bossche admitted that subsidies were too high, especially for large-scale installations.[25] The guaranteed minimum price for electricity produced was reduced. For small photovoltaic installations(less than 1 MW) it was reduced from 330 EUR per MWh to 250 EUR per MWh by January 2012 with the goal of reaching renewable energy targets at a reasonable cost.[26] This resulted in a rally which caused the number of installations to almost double from 20,514 to 37,355 in 2011.[24] The minimum price will be lowered further to 93 EUR per MWh from 2013 onwards.

Notable installations[edit]

A solar park of 100MW is set to be built near the town of Lommel, in the Flemish province of Limburg. Construction will start in September 2018 and will be completed mid-2019. It will produce 83 GWh per year equivalent of the consumption of 24000 households.[27]

In 2011 a 3-kilometre (2-mile) above ground "tunnel", built to avoid having to fell trees for a new high-speed railroad, was covered with solar panels.[28][29]

Photovoltaic power station in Belgium

In December 2009, Katoen Natie announced that they will install 800,000 m² of solar panels in various places, including Antwerp. It is expected that the installed solar power in the Flemish Region will be increased by 25%, when finished. That will be the largest installation in Europe. The installation produces about 35 GWh yearly.[30] The total cost will be 166 million euros.[31]

In October 2009, the city of Antwerp announced that they want to install 2,500 m² of solar panels on roofs of public buildings, that will generate 265 MWh per annum.[32]

In 2009, the city of Leuven installed 1,810 solar panels on public buildings.[33]

Wallonia[edit]

Installed capacity (MWp)[17][15]
Year capacity
2009 64
2011 190

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "2019 | EurObserv'ER". Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d "Photovoltaic Barometer 2016". 28 November 2015.
  3. ^ "Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics 2014–2018" (PDF). epia.org. EPIA – European Photovoltaic Industry Association. p. 34. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 June 2014. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  4. ^ collected historical data from article growth of photovoltaics
  5. ^ "Snapshot of Global PV 1992–2014" (PDF). iea-pvps.org/index.php?id=32. International Energy Agency – Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme. 30 March 2015. Archived from the original on 30 March 2015.
  6. ^ Photovoltaic Barometer 2012
  7. ^ Photovoltaic Barometer 2010
  8. ^ Photovoltaic Barometer 2011
  9. ^ Photovoltaic Barometer
  10. ^ EUROBSER'VER. "Photovoltaic Barometer – installations 2012 and 2013" (PDF). energies-renouvelables.org. pp. 5, 6. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014.
  11. ^ a b "Photovoltaic barometer 2017 | EurObserv'ER". www.eurobserv-er.org. 28 November 2016. Retrieved 3 December 2017.
  12. ^ a b "Photovoltaic barometer 2018". 28 April 2018.
  13. ^ Market growth of solar power in Flanders
  14. ^ Feiten en tendenzen 2009
  15. ^ a b Le nombre de panneaux solaires explose
  16. ^ 50.000 Vlaamse gezinnen hebben zonnepanelen eind 2009
  17. ^ a b "Het geïnstalleerde PV-vermogen in Vlaanderen, Wallonië en Brussel" (in Dutch). architectura.be. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 30 November 2012.
  18. ^ EUROBSER'VER. "Photovoltaic Barometer – installations 2012 and 2013" (PDF). energies-renouvelables.org. pp. 5, 6. Archived from the original (PDF) on 22 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014.
  19. ^ Snapshot of Global PV 1992–2013 (PDF) (2nd ed.). International Energy Agency – Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme. 2014. p. 11. ISBN 978-3-906042-19-0. Archived (PDF) from the original on 5 April 2014.
  20. ^ provisional IEA-PVPS data later revised, see article growth of photovoltaics for additional sources.
  21. ^ "Nooit zoveel zonne-energie geproduceerd in België". Het Laatste Nieuws. 20 March 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2014.
  22. ^ "EXISTING AND FUTURE PV PROSUMER CONCEPTS , pg. 18" (PDF).
  23. ^ a b c d "Study on "Residential Prosumers in the European Energy Union"" (PDF).
  24. ^ a b c Energy regulator's bi-yearly statistics on installations receiving green certificates: mid2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006
  25. ^ Dossier zonnepanelen, nieuwsblad.be]
  26. ^ "Vlaamse regering past steun voor groene stroom aan" (in Dutch). freyavandenbossche.be. 12 October 2010.
  27. ^ http://www.renouvelle.be/fr/actualite-belgique/le-plus-grand-parc-solaire-du-benelux
  28. ^ High-speed Euro train gets green boost from two miles of solar panels
  29. ^ Belgium launches Europe’s first solar train
  30. ^ Katoen Natie heeft grootste installatie zonnepanelen in Europa
  31. ^ België heeft grootste installatie zonnepanelen van Europa
  32. ^ Antwerpen wil 2.500 m² zonnepanelen plaatsen op stadsgebouwen
  33. ^ Leuven plaatst zonnepanelen op 4 stadsgebouwen

External links[edit]

Media related to Solar energy in Belgium at Wikimedia Commons